For a whole month–a couple of years ago–I managed to blog every day to prove that I could do it–write every day, that is–and I did! Some of you may have noticed that I’ve posted less and less frequently after returning from a month-long travel in February. If you haven’t noticed, then you probably won’t be interested to know what’s going on with Hubby and me so you can stop reading now. If, on the other hand, you’ve been just a tiny bit curious? . . then hang on and I’ll explain.
The two of us went out to breakfast after a doctor’s visit on a chilly day in early March as we often do after I’ve fasted since bedtime the night before to prepare for a full-blood-draw. It’s usually mid-morning by that time and I’m half starved. Sometimes He’s starving too since he chooses to delay breaking his fast too–out of empathy for me. On those days a simple toast and grapefruit won’t do, no sir, so this day we headed across the street to Mimi’s Cafe and ordered a bigger breakfast than normal. For me, pancakes, scrambled eggs and bacon with orange juice and coffee; for him something akin to Huevos Ranchero made with three eggs, toast, juice and coffee.
What is there about starting the day off with a sumptuous feast that makes you relax and look out the window at all the available retail opportunity and find all kinds of excuses for not going home right away? That’s how we wound up in the bookshop afterwards. Did I ever tell you that two stores Hubby discourages me from shopping is a bookstore or a fabric store? There’s a reason for that as you’ll see. But this particular morning, there was a reason to be there and the blame goes to daughter #1. You see, for Christmas–in addition to half of the new digital camera for which she shared the cost with Daughter #2–she gave me a $25 gift card for Barnes & Noble. It was burning a hole in my pocket and I had to spend it!
Stores know who their customers are! Consequently they know how to set up displays to catch the eye of book lovers everywhere! In addition to the new arrivals on the right, the bargain tables on the left, the center aisle featured a whole counter of NookBooks! But how did they know we had borrowed Daughter #1’s Kindle book for our India trip and become quite enamored to electronic reading? I was one who swore nothing could ever replace the printed book. If only I could have enough shelf space! An eBook is the answer, my subconscious said. But you read most of your books from the library, my reasoning self answered. As for those I absolutely must have around because I like them so much, used books at Amazon was the answer but that brought up that other problem again: running out of shelf space.
With a Nook, we weren’t restricted to downloading from a single source. Sure there was the Barnes & Noble NookBook purchasing site, but we could get the classics for free from public domain websites. We wouldn’t even have to leave the house. We could download from both the city and the county library in just seconds. You know the rest. It didn’t take much justification to warrant our folly–as I named our reading device as I registered it–as Hubby’s birthday was less than two weeks away, mine a little more than two months! It’ll be our combined birthday present to each other! We’ll use my Christmas gift-card as part of the purchase price! To make a long story short, when we left the store that morning, our tummies still full from Mimi’s breakfast, I had a shopping bag on my arm loaded with a brand new electronic reader inside!
It took a week or more of working to figure out the different functions, where and how to download the needed apps, still another several days figuring out how to load it with purchases, and more importantly how to get free books from the city and county libraries. I’m not a habitual cusser, but the things that can get me started are machines of all kinds and most things electronic. The biggest deterrence to learning new contraptions easily at my age is that the manuals are badly written. And I think the audience to which they’re written are those who never experienced a life without computers running things. Which matters not a whit when you’re trying to figure out if it’s the instructions or the instructed who is the dumbest!In the vernacular of the day, it is what it is!
After nearly four weeks of alternately swearing I’m taking it back or trying one more time and THEN I’m taking it back and telling the store to shove it where the sun won’t shine, I’ve absorbed enough information to be able to load it with sufficient books for each our reading tastes–quite different I’m learning–and am now able to download free library books. The challenge now is to find the time to read them before they disappear automatically after three weeks. That part is the downer, actually, as I’m used to checking out several books at a time and switching back and forth from fiction and non-fiction. On the plus side, there will be no library late fees, and that’s a good thing. So far, I’ve spent only about $6 on purchases, although how long that record holds I’m not predicting. I’m currently reading The Paris Wife (Paula McLain) and have one waiting, I Love a Broad Margin to My Life (Maxine Hong Kingston, who reflects on turning 65), and then it’ll be Hubby’s turn. Therein lies the possibility of a new problem brewing. (I think we might need another eBook sooner or later.)
So there you are. That’s why I don’t blog as often as I should. There just doesn’t seem to be time enough, and how many times have you heard that? I’ll be back next time, soon I hope, to continue to document our latest travel, hopefully to finish well before the next trip, that Hubby swears will be as soon as September, Ireland and Scotland to check out parts my ancestral beginning. If all this holds little interest for you, remember that I warned you in the opening paragraph. No apology is needed. Either you’ve already stopped reading, or the shame is on you.
P.S: Hubby says, “What, No Pictures?”